So it's August 31st, and I can confidently say that the Lord has used the month of August to show me more discipline than ever before in my 23 years of living. At first, I didn't realize what was happening. I just thought, wow, this component of my life sucks! Without going into detail about what exactly has gone on, I will say that I've just experienced some trying situations in which the Lord has really tested me. It's like He has been saying to me, "Ok, Kath, so what is it that's really important to you? Is it getting what you want, or serving Me, loving Me, and loving others?" While I would like to say my life is about serving the Lord because I LOVE HIM and can see His goodness so regularly, it gets really real when you don't get something that you want and can't understand why. I was talking with Pamela about this seemingly impossible situation and she suggested I read Hebrews 12. So we read it together. Talk about a whammy of a passage:
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2 looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.
How the heck am I supposed to run with endurance the race that is set before me when there's all this earthly crap that I want weighing me down? That's where the discipline comes in- when God says, "Ok, you don't get to have any of that crap, anyway. I'll make you lighter."
Then it talks about how God disciplines us because He is our Father and He loves us.
...He disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness.11 For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
Ok, so he makes us more like Him by disciplining us. Oh wait, so that means that discipline is a privilege??? Heck yes it is! It is proof that God loves you! So I came to two conclusions:
1. I complain way too much, am embarrassingly dramatic and ridiculously self-centered. None of this was new information.
2. If you are ever experiencing anything in life that is unpleasant, you truly can rejoice in your trials. Not because it says we are supposed to in the Bible, but because it means that you aren't getting what you want and that is called DISCIPLINE!!! And discipline is proof that the God of the universe loves you and cares enough about you to give you opportunities to become more like Him.
Get out of here! This is great!